I am back with more stuff about Korean Skin care routine. In my previous post I said that you need to listen to your skin and treat it like an alien, because its very unique in its own way.
Here I will write about my own discoveries about Korean Skin Care Routine.
First of all the amounts of products that you use. Before you jump to what everyone says: ‘Omigawd its like 7 to 10 steps’, and you are like: “Woah if I apply this many my skin will become amazing in no time!! Layering?!?!?! Oh that must put so many benefits on my skin its gotta be good right???????”
Actually while vitamins and stuff is all good for school, your skin is unable to handle everything. Its marketing boys and girls. They want to sell tons of stuff, and its freaking good marketing.
Let me tell you a story. I was using a Korean skin care routine. Not a lot of products actually. Daily cleansing day and night, toner and lotion for acne, and sometimes an aloe moisturizer .
Then one day I got sick. I got so sick that I couldn’t do my routine. I had a horrible cough that I had to force myself to stop, or I’ll puke. I had to sleep with strepsils and eat it one after another to stop the cough…anyway I was sick for a month. As mentioned I was so dead that I didn’t do my routine at all. You know to everyone’s expectation you may think, holy shit how f*cked is your face afterwards (when I am super acne prone). Guess what. My face was clean as a baby. My face, while it wasn’t irritated from any of the products, became better after I STOPPED the routine.
This is what made me reconsider what I am doing. After this experience it led me to believe that in Skin Care – Less is More.
But before I tell you what I am doing with my skin now to keep it healthy, I want to swiftly touch on things your skin needs and what is an extra.
Do you want your skin to be good? You need to know what it likes. You know like food. If you eat something every day of your life, you will eventually get tired of it right? Well to be fair its similar with your skin, or atleast in my own experience.
Picture this, skin is like a woman. (I am not being mean to girls here, mind you I am a girl and I have my mood swings.)
Basically most of skins is a moody son of a beaoch that needs care. You: ‘hey baby what do you want today? Oh u don’t want this… oh okay…”. If its better for you, you can even think of your skin as if its a human being, your angry girlfriend or even your stomach.
“What do you feel like eating today?”
and so on…
So you need to adapt to your skin wanting attitude and get with it needs. First of all:
Cleaning works wonders even when you do nothing else but that; every day, every morning and evening. If you actually get a good soap or foam cleanser, it works VERY well even in a short run.
My mom was a skin care specialist, and at that point I was too lazy to do daily skin care (too young? 16.), and she bought me a soap (that costs like 50$), for my acne.
Guys I shit you not, when I was not lazy and used this soup for 3 days in a row (yah only 3 days before I switched back to lazy), my skin cleared up a WHOLE TON. I used this soup on and off and it was very nice. It DID lower the ph level of my skin though, but it didn’t ruin my skin (ph = is the balance of oils in your skin in simple terms, when the soup or a foam strips you from it you feel your skin is kinda dry and stripped off its moisture, I suggest you not use this kind of stuff). What it did is basically dry out my pimples and they cleared up way quicker.
Actually I would have bought that soap even now, but unfortunately its not in production anymore.
EITHER WAY. This proves that you DON’T need a lot of products to get better. (of course there are benefits of Korean products and I will explain how in more detail)
Okay, so this comes after cleaning that is pretty much a must have even if you have oily skin. There are moisture products for oily skin too, yay~!
Either way, when you moisturize your face, it ‘kills’ your skin’s want to lubricate itself and screw itself over by doing so. External environments can cause your skin to behave in all sorts of ways and sometimes you need to use more moisturization than usually too. (You can read my story/ convo with my skin in the previous post lol Here )
As mentioned earlier, and I will mention again. JUST by moisturizing your face you can gain a lot of benefits. Less acne, tighter pores (yes), dry patches, and more.
When your skin lubricates: the oils block your pores, the sand/particles join the party = acne, skin behaving weirdly, dry patches, oily patches, etc. When the skin has too much oil, I noticed, that the pores become wider too.
Now taadaaadaddaaadaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa~ THE VERDICT:
EVERYTHING ELSE IS OPTIONAL!
Here I said it.
Everything else is like a plus thingy, ok. Something you wanna improve and here is when Korean cosmetics come into play. THE BEAUTY OF SO MANY OPTIONS, WOW HOLY MAN.
HOWEVER what you need to be careful of is what you use and the amount. These are all optional (unless otherwise stated).
- Anti Aging – We are all eventually going to get wrinkles.. sadly, but we can slow them!!! Not just korean skin care, but tons of international brands create a lot of products for anti aging. But guess what, their primary function is to moisturize and give you collagen (something that helps you age slower in simple terms) IMPORTANT: A lot of anti aging comes as a moisturizer too, so its nice to get a two-in-one option ;))))! (Ex: day and night cream, and sometimes an eye cream)
- Toner – It is a somewhat a debatable topic for me, because while it isn’t a must (I mean internationally toners a while ago were like make-up removals/ cleansers, applied with a cotton pad; although they strip you off your moisture). In Korea, Toners act like boosters. That’s when it gets interesting. I was really tempted to put it in “everything else”, but I think Toners deserve their own section if you use them correctly. Toners are usually used after you wash your face, morning and evening to kind of give a nice touch to your skin. After you master your cleansing and moisturization, I strongly advice to master your Toner next. I currently have 3 toners. I use all of them. Not on the same day of course. When you wake up and wash your face you can tell how your skin is feeling and choose a toner for the day. You can also choose what routine to do if you have more that one moisturization product. It all depends on what your skin is feeling. For example: If your skin is very very strong and healthy, you can use a stronger toner (for a problem, like acne or black spots), with knowledge your skin will not suffer. If your skin is healing or irritated I suggest to use something very very gentle (Green tea Innisfree products worked well for me as they are super gentle and contain only natural products (plus you choose the one for your skin type)). If your skin is very close to strong, you can use something with Snail ingredient as it boosts your healing. I wouldn’t suggest to use snail in the peak stress of your skin, cause it may stress it further.
- Vitamins – Vitamins and boosters are super cool, to give a bit of extras to the skin, we all want it healthy right. But you need to be very very careful not to over do it. I will go into this in more detail, but if you do want to TRY vitamins (ex: Vitamin C, serums, ampules), use once and wait for like several days, before trying it again. Also do this when you mastered your other products and know they all work well before trying anything new (same applies to anything else).
- Masks – Masks is a 50-50% and super nice as little boosters for skin. Again every nice thing is a double edged sword. Use once and wait for several days to see how your skin feels. If your skin feels weird its also possible you either kept it on too long or its just plain not good for you. For example, I personally, had experiences when the package says 15-20 min on a ‘relaxing’ mask, after keeping it for 18 min, my skin was redish on cheeks (next time I’ll try 10 minutes). Basically my point is you may need to adjust the timing as per your requirements. If your skin is VERY sensitive, minus 5 minutes from the instructions.
- Exfoliators/AHA/BHA – Approach carefully if your skin is very sensitive. If you are me you can only use this once a week or even once in two weeks. This stuff basically ‘cleans’ your skin, its very nice for acne and ‘renewing’ your skin.
- Everything else [essence, lotion, etc, etc] – I think Serums and Ampules fall under “Vitamins” and “Anti-Aging” for the most part. ‘Everything else’ is similar to vitamins, depending on what it does, but overall I personally consider them the EXTRAS of the extras. Its something that makes us wanna apply lots of stuff on our face and expect our face to become a Korean model|actress. I personally think that things like a random essence or a random lotion are technically unnecessary, if you give your skin what it needs. Of course not everyone may share my opinion, but given what I said above, if you already have a cleanser and a moisturizer and something for anti aging if you are over 25 years old, you technically don’t need anything else other that occasional problem care stuff (acne, black spots) and vitamins.
So this is it for today, I already typed a lot of stuff. In the next post I will share what I personally do and how I organize my routine.
If you are just starting out with the Korean skin care routine or want a different insight: Master your products in this order: Cleansing + Moisturization > Toner > the rest from my list of your choice.
Hope this is helpful for you guys, and I cant wait to share what I found out for myself in my routine. kisses xxxx